Following the New England Patriots 15-10 win over the New York Jets Sunday, Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner accused Patriots quarterback Mac Jones of hitting him in his “private parts” during the game. Gardner was upset at the “dirty play” and shoved Jones away after the alleged incident.
Gardner posted a video of the incident to social media to make his case. He also said, “[Jones] got tackled. He reached out to me to get me to help him up. I just moved his hand out of the way. He got up and then came up to me like ‘Good job.’ While he was saying that, he hit me in my private parts. I didn’t react like I really wanted to. I definitely wasn’t expecting that. First time for everything I guess,” via Chris Mason of Mass Live.
Posting this so I don’t get fined lol pic.twitter.com/2KjcAVTNsW
— SAUCE GARDNER (@iamSauceGardner) September 25, 2023
Jones later denied Sauce Gardner's accusation, saying “nothing was intentional.”
The NFL then looked into the video after Gardner's claims. The NFL ruled that the video did not provide enough evidence of any wrongdoing, so Mac Jones will not be punished or fined, per NFL Network's Tom Pelissero.
Any discipline would’ve required sufficient video evidence to support Sauce Gardner’s accusation. In this case, there wasn’t enough. pic.twitter.com/xbHPydHdZA
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) September 30, 2023
This is not the first time Mac Jones has been accused of such a shot or a dirty play in general. However, the NFL can't issue a fine or any repercussions without substantial proof of wrongdoing.
The Patriots and Jets will next meet up at the end of the year on Jan. 7, and there very well could be some unresolved tension between the two division rivals.